JACKSON – Bike medics are headed for the Capitol city and eventually the entire state.
AMR is known for being the first to respond in a crisis. It’s rare to attend an event in Mississippi and not find an ambulance or two parked outside, just in case someones health is compromised.
It might seem like moving back in time, going from ambulances to bike medics, but that isn’t the case. Jim Pollard, public relations for AMR said these medics are able to get to a patient faster in some cases.
“The bottom line is paramedics can’t help you until they can get to ya,” said Pollard. “There are lots of impediments to making contact with a patient in some settings.”
These teams will primarily be used in special events such as the State Fair, Marathons, St. Paddy’s Day, etc.
“Here’s another way to serve the patient and community, shortening the response time and putting the reassuring presence with the skills and knowledge needed to make what could be your worst day a lot better,” said Pollard.
Those selected to train in the four day process came from the AMR team in Jackson as well as one from the Coast, there were a total of 9.
“It sounds kind of funny, four days to learn how to ride a bicycle, but it was a very intense course. It was alot to learn,” said Eric Philips, paramedic. “Anybody can get on a bicycle and go fast in straight line.”
The medics will carry a very condensed version of what is in an ambulance. Those packs can include more advanced first aid equipment and at times a automated external defibrillator. Each pack weighs close to 30 pounds.
Philips said the most common call they receive at large events are for overheating.
“People don’t drink like they’re supposed to and when it’s uncommonly warm people don’t prepare and aren’t hydrated properly,” said Philips.
They are ironing out the kinks and outfitting the bikes but before you know it you’ll see bike-medics at local events.